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THE ZODIAC
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Reviewed by: Rees Savidis

Directed by: Alexander Bulkley

Starring:
Justin Chambers
Robin Tunny
Rory Culkin

Movie:  
star star star star
Extras:  
star star star
Overall:  
star star star star
What's it about
A cop, his wife, their little boy and a television news reporter are forced to deal with one of the most prolific and elusive serial killers in modern American history.
Is it good movie?

While ‘The Zodiac’ (Which opens March 17 2006 in selected Theatres) is certainly a well made film on a technical level, it is continually hampered by a maddeningly muddled script and some pretty heavy posturing from lead actor Justin Chambers. This is the first of two films dealing with the murderous ways of the Zodiac Killer to be released this year (David Fincher’s ‘Zodiac’ hits in the Fall) but it does so little to scratch out any sort of watermark that its pole position almost seems moot.

The biggest problem with the film is that it doesn’t know what angle its’ approaching the story from. It was incredibly difficult to give myself over to the film because I was never allowed to care about anything or anyone long enough for it – or them – to really register. Are we following the lead investigator? He’s the obvious choice. Nope? How about his wife? Wrong. Okay, what about his son? No? Maybe it’s the TV news reporter? Wrong again, Chachi. The film presents so many possible protagonists that when the story finally kicks in - the damn thing’s nearly ended. Maybe I was supposed to identify with the killer himself? He was the most well rounded character in the film. Strange, we never even see him!

Now, like I said a moment ago, it is a well made film on a technical level. Director Alexander Bulkley proves himself to be a very even-handed and capable filmmaker when it comes to telling the story from a visual stance. Cinematographer Denis Moloney also makes good - eschewing the typical pitfalls of low budget lighting for a decidedly rich and moody look that serves the story in spades.
Video / Audio
The Extras
Last Call
‘The Zodiac’ is something akin to a nicely gift-wrapped empty box; it’s pretty to look at but once you dig a little deeper, disappointment sets in fast. A few more passes at the script and this film could have been quite the little gem. As it stands now, it’s merely…mediocre.
ARROW IN THE HEAD'S RATING SYSTEM
star star star star I'D BUTCHER MY FAMILY TO SEE THIS AGAIN
star star star HANG ME BUT I DUG IT A LOT
star star AN OK WAY TO KILL TWO HOURS
star JUST SLING AN ARROW IN MY HEAD AND LET ME DIE IN PEACE

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